Bengals coaches have no issues with Jeremy Hill's leap in Cleveland

CINCINNATI -- Did two of the Cincinnati Bengals' top coaches find issue with Jeremy Hill's celebratory front-row leap on the road this past Sunday?

Nope. As a matter of fact, they welcomed the running back's daring attempt to revel in his 1-yard touchdown with a pair of nearby Bengals fans at FirstEnergy Stadium.

"It's in the NFL rules that they are allowed to celebrate after a touchdown. Just do it within the rules, which is what he did," Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis said.

Added offensive coordinator Hue Jackson: "I love that. That didn't bother me."

As you'd imagine, the Cleveland Browns were agitated by the spectacle. Linebacker Chris Kirksey directly voiced his displeasure to Hill. Just as Hill was getting comfortable in his wall embrace with a fan wearing a Bengals jersey, Kirksey pulled the running back down, and gave him a piece of his mind.

Kirksey's disapproval resulted in officials flagging him for unsportsmanlike conduct. The 15-yard penalty resulted in the Bengals teeing the ball at the 50 on their ensuing kickoff.

"I was zoned out," Kirksey said after the game. "I was just trying to protect the end zone, protect the house."

Hill's third-quarter score was one of four touchdowns the Bengals had in the 37-3 road rout.

Days before the game, Hill promised he wasn't going to go into the stands in Cleveland in an effort to one-up the failed leap he had there last December. It was in that 2014 game when a Browns fan pushed Hill back to the ground before he could even reach the apex of another post-touchdown, front-row jump. Despite his personal promises, Hill ended up having a "spur-of-the-moment" decision Sunday that led to his more successful do-over.

Jackson said he appreciated that side of Hill's nature, and didn't want to discourage him from bringing it out. He does want Hill to control other aspects of his flashy pre-game personality, though.

"I'm never going to muzzle Jeremy because I don't want to. There's part of that you got to have to play this game," Jackson said. "There's got to be a fire in your belly. You don't have any fire in your belly you can't play this game. I'm not going to do that.

"At the same time, sometimes all the outward expression before things happen is not needed. You got to preserve your energy so you can play good. I mean, I can dance now. Anybody want to see me dance? I can Nae Nae, I can Dab, I can 'Walk it out.' I can do it all. I get my shoulders popping, too, before the game. But I just know how far I can go before my energy and focus is on something else. That's what it all is. At the same time you, you have to channel who you are and where you are because you have a big game to play or coach. We get focused that way."

Maybe there will be a more muted Hill in pregame warmups the rest of the season. But when it comes to his penchant for touchdown celebrations, coaches tell Hill to Dab, or Whip, or Ickey Shuffle ... or leap on.